Monday, March 30, 2009

Brett Gardner named starting Center Fielder

The Yankees and Girardi announced that Brett Gardner is the starting Center Fielder. I like the move and it is a needed one. What I do not like is that he will not be leading off at this point. Word is Girardi wants Jeter to lead off and have Damon hit #2. I hope that changes. Brett is the fastest guy on the team and maybe all of baseball. Having him hit #9 is not a smart move. Since the days of Rickey Henderson, the Yankees have lacked a true lead-off hitter. Brett can be that guy if given the chance. The Yankees have to try and move Melky and/or Swisher. Too many outfielders and too many DHs. Enough is enough. We need a solid utility infield player and the Yankees lack that at this point. A guy like a Luis Sojo is needed and the Yankees should be looking for someone like that.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Yankee Stadium to be Sold in April - Piece by Piece

Here is the latest information I have on the demolition of the stadium.......

Take care......Brad

Deal struck to sell Stadium memorabiliaDemolition of old Yankees ballpark reportedly to begin in April

By Bobbie Dittmeier / MLB

Farewell to the Cathedral Seats, foul poles, dugouts, urinals and numerous other items from the old Yankee Stadium will be sold to fans as part of a $10 million deal between the Yankees and New York City, the New York Post reported on Wednesday. Demolition of the old Stadium will begin next month, prior to the scheduled April 16 opening of the new Stadium. Specifics on the sale of items will be available in the coming weeks, sources familiar with the agreement told the Post. The old Stadium is owned by the city, which will receive a guaranteed $10 million, plus a percentage of any profits above $15.9 million, in exchange for allowing the Yankees to sell the city-owned portions of the ballpark, which includes all 57,000 seats. City officials would not comment on the particulars of the deal, according to the Post, but mayoral spokesman Andrew Brent said an agreement is being "finalized." Seats from Shea Stadium, the Mets' ballpark that was demolished this offseason, sold for $869 a pair, leading to speculation that seats from the old Yankee Stadium may sell for a considerably higher figure. "The seats are where the money is, but in this economy, it's tough to put a value on sports collectibles," Mike Heffner of auction house told the Post. The old Stadium, which opened in 1923 and reopened in 1976 after a two-year renovation, hosted its final game in September. Bobbie Dittmeier is an editor/producer for This story was not subject to the approval of Major League Baseball or its clubs.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Harvey Frommer - What's in a Yankee Nickname?


What's in a Yankee Nickname? (I) Yankee nick-names have run the gamut from complimentary to embarrassing, from hero worshipping to amusing from over-reaching to on target. Herewith, a sampler.

"The Babe" ­ George Herman Ruth leads off the list and paces the list in most nick-names acquired. First called "Babe" by teammates on the Baltimore Orioles, his first professional team because of his youth, G.H.Ruth was also called "Jidge" by Yankee teammates, short for George. He called most players "Kid," because he couldn't remember names, even of his closest friends. Opponents called him "The Big Monk" and "Monkey." Many of Babe Ruth's nick-names came from over-reaching sports writers who attempted to pay tribute to his slugging prowess: "The Bambino", "the Wali of Wallop", "the Rajah of Rap", "the Caliph of Clout", "the Wazir of Wham", and "the Sultan of Swat", The Colossus of Clout, Maharajah of Mash, The Behemoth of Bust, "The King of Clout." Other Yankee nick-names, expressions, bon mots of note for "Babe" and "Ruth" In spring training 1927, Babe Ruth bet pitcher Wilcy Moore $l00 that he would not get more than three hits all season. A notoriously weak hitter, Moore somehow managed to get six hits in 75 at bats. Ruth paid off his debt and Moore purchased two mules for his farm. He named them "Babe" and "Ruth." "Babe Ruth's Legs" - Sammy Byrd, used as a pinch runner for Ruth "Bam-Bam" - Hensley Meulens could speak about five languages and had a difficult name to pronounce. "Banty rooster" - Casey Stengel nickname for Whitey Ford because of his style and attitude. "Battle of the Biltmore" ­ 1947 Series celebration in Manhattan's Biltmore Hotel was a time and place where Larry MacPhail drunkenly fought with everyone and ended his Yankee ownership time. "Biscuit Pants" - A reference to the well filled out trousers of Lou Gehrig. "Billyball" - the aggressive style of play utilized by Billy Martin "Blind Ryne" - Ryne Duren because of his very poor vision, uncorrected -20/70 and 20/200. "Bob the Gob" - Bob Shawkey spent most of 1918 in the Navy as a yeoman petty officer aboard the battleship Arkansas. "The Boss" - A a formerly apt description of Yankee owner, George Steinbrenner "Boomer" - David Wells, for his in your face personality. "The Boston Massacre" - described the way the Red Sox collapsed in 1978 and the seep of a four game series by the Yankees that September. "Broadway" - Shortstop Lyn Lary was married to Broadway star Mary Lawler. "Bronx Bombers" For the borough and home run power. "Bronx Zoo" a derogatory reference to off color behavior on and off the playing field through the years and especially in the 1970s. "Brooklyn Schoolboy" was what they called Waite Hoyt for his time as a star pitcher at Erasmus High School. "Bulldog" - Jim Bouton, for his tenacity. "Bullet Bob" - Bob Turley, for the pop on his fastball. "Bye-Bye"- Steve Balboni, the primary DH of the 1990 Yankees had 17 homers but hit just .192. ''Carnesville Plowboy'' - Spud Chandler for his hometown of Carnesville, "Deacon" - Everett Scott, for his not too friendly look. "Georgia Catfish" - Jim Hunter, name given to him by Oakland owner Charles Finley ""the CAT-a-lyst," name given to Mickey Rivers by Howard Cosell for his ability to trigger Yankee team offense. "Chairman of the Board" - Elston Howard came up with the phrase in tribute to Whitey Ford and his commanding and take charge manner on the mound. "Clutch versus Clutch" - qualitative commentary about Yankee-Red Sox competition. "Columbia Lou" - Lou Gehrig because of his collegiate roots. "Commerce Comet" - Mickey Mantle "The Count" - Sparky Lyle, handlebar mustache and lordy ways "The Crow" - Frank Crosetti loud voice and chirpy ways "Danish Viking" - George Pipgras, for his size and roots. "Daddy Longlegs. - Dave Winfield, for his size and long legs. "Death Valley" - the old deep centerfield in Yankee Stadium - a home run here was a mighty poke. "Dial-a-Deal - Gabe Paul earned this one for his telephone trading habits. "Donnie Baseball" - Don Mattingly was the only player in any sport to have a nickname with the actual name of his or her sport in it. Some say it was coined by Yankee broadcaster Michael Kay; others say it came from Kirby Pucket. Kay takes the credit; Mattingly gives the credit to Puckett. "El Duque" - Orlando Hernandez"El Duquecito" -ADRIAN HERNANDEZ because of a pitching style similar to Orlando "El Duque" Hernandez, the younger Cuban is of no relation to his elder countryman. "Ellie" - affectionate abbreviation of Elston Howard's first name "Father of the Emory Ball" Rookie right-hander Russ Ford posted a 26-6 record with 8 shutouts, 1910 Fireman" - The first to have this nick-name was Johnny Murphy, the first great relief pitcher who put out fires. Joe Page picked up this nick-name for his top relief work later on. "Five O'clock Lightning" - At five o'clock the blowing of a whistle at a factory near Yankee Stadium signaled the end of the work day in the 1930s and also what the Yankees were doing to the opposition on the field. Flash" - Joe Gordon earned this nick-name because of his fast, slick fielding and hot line drives. Four hour manager" - Bucky Harris, who put his time in at the game and was finished. "Fordham Johnny" - for the college Johnny Murphy attended. "Friday Night Massacre" - April 26, 1974, Yankees Fritz Patterson, Steve Kline, Fred Beene, Tom Buskey, and half the pitching staff were traded to Cleveland for Chris Chambliss, Dick Tidrow, and Ceil Upshaw. "Gator" - Ron Guidry, who came from Louisiana alligator country. "Gay Caballero" - Lefty Gomez for his Mexican roots and fun loving ways. "Gay Reliever" - Joe Page for his night owl activity. " Gehrigville." Bleachers in right-center at Yankee Stadium. "The Godfather" - Joe Torre, for his Italian roots and his leadership skills on the baseball field. "Gooneybird" - Don Larsen's teammates called him that for his late-night behavior. "Goofy" or "El Goofo" - earned by Lefty Gomez for his wild antics "Goose" Gossage "The Great Agitator" -for Billy Martin, self explanatory. "Grandma" - it was not a nick-name Johnny Murphy liked, but he was called that for his pitching motion, rocking chair style. Another story is that fellow Yankee Pat Malone gave him the name because of his complaining nature especially as regards food and lodgings. "Happy Jack" Jack Chesbro's time as an attendant at the state mental hospital in Middletown, New York where he pitched for the hospital team and showed off a very pleasant disposition won him the nickname. "Holy Cow" - one of Phil Rizzuto's ways of expressing awe "Horse Nose" - a nick-name given catcher Pat Collins by Babe Ruth, a reference to a facial feature. "Horsewhips Sam" - Sam Jones earned this because of his sharp-breaking curve ball. "House That Ruth Built" - Ruth's immense popularity that propelled the Yankees into their new home, Yankee Stadium "Home Run" - Frank Baker, for the two game winning homers he hit in the 1911 World Series. "Home run twins" Mickey Mantle and Roger Maris, phrase coined in 1961. "Iron Horse" - Lou Gehrig "Joltin' Joe" - Joe DiMaggio, for the jolting shots he hit. "Jumping Joe" Joe Dugan earned his nickname for being AWOL from his first big league club as a youngster "Junk Man" - Eddie Lopat frustrated hitters off stride with an assortment of slow breaking pitches thrown with cunning and accuracy. "Kentucky Colonel" - Earl Combs came from Kentucky "The King and the Crown Prince" - Babe Ruth and Lou Gehrig King Kong" Charlie Keller earned this nick-name because of his muscular body type and black, bushy brows. "Knight of Kennett Square" - Herb Pennock because he raised thoroughbreds and hosted fox hunts in his home town of Kennett Square, Pennsylvania. Knucksie" - Phil Niekro because of his knuckleball


Harvey Frommer is his 33rd consecutive year of writing sports books. The author of 40 of them including the classics: "New York City Baseball,1947-1957" and "Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball," his acclaimed REMEMBERING YANKEE STADIUM, an oral/narrative history (Abrams, Stewart, Tabori and Chang) was published in 2008 as well as a reprint version of his classic "Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball." The prolific Frommer is at work on REMEMBERING FENWAY PARK (2010).
Frommer sports books are available direct from the author - discounted and autographed.
FROMMER SPORTSNET (syndicated) reaches a readership in the millions and is housed on Internet search engines for extended periods of time.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Yankees Trivia for 3/18

Who was the first Yankees left-handed pitcher to attain 30 saves in a single-season?

Sparky Lyle - he notched 35 saves for the Yankees during the 1972 season.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Photo of the Week - Old Yankee Stadium

Here is a shot of the stadium in 1975 during the renovation of the stadium.


Yankees Trivia for March 17

Which pitcher won the most games for the Yankees during the 1970s?

Mel Stottlemyre won 67 games during the 1970s for the New York Yankees.

The Turf Finally Gets Ripped Up at the Old Stadium

Here is a shot of the old stadium on March 16, 2009 as the turf gets ripped up. Notice all the seats are still in place. Still no word on the "deconstruction" of the stadium and when it is going to happen. A sad day in Yankee history.


Thursday, March 12, 2009

Yankee Trivia for 3/12

Who was the first Yankees shortstop to hit for the cycle? (Hint - He accomplished the feat on September 3, 1995)

Tony Fernandez hit for the cycle against Oakland.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Yankees Trivia for 3/11

Which Yankees player, who was not a pitcher, was the first modern free agent signed by the team? (Hint - He was signed on November 29 of the year he signed.)

Reggie Jackson

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Yankees Season Ticket Holders Relocation Program

Much has been said of the Yankees season ticket holder relocation program. At this point, most of it being negative, meaning season ticket license holders are not happy with their new seats. I believe most are happy, but clearly there are many who are not. We all knew, including myself who is a ticket license holder, that demand would greatly outweigh supply. The first important fact is that we knew there would be less seats in the new stadium than the old stadium. The old stadium held 56,886 and the new stadium will hold 52,325 which includes standing room. Just some simple math concludes that there are at least 4,561 less seats. We also knew about the VERY expensive seats that jumped from $150 or so to $2500! Though there are not many of those seats, the "regular" fan who used to be able afford these expensive seats is now going to move back and take cheaper seats and let the corporations and the very rich buy the top-tier seats. Thus these people push back the next group of season ticket holders and so on, creating a domino affect. Many of those fans that had upper deck seats were pushed into the bleachers and those in the bleachers, which includes me, section 55 Row H last year, are probably going to be moved out completely. Unless of course, we can come up with $350 per seat, per game f0r the full season package. Folks, this is simple "supply and demand" and the demand is overwhelming. Also what did not help is the number of fans who "forgot" to fill out the relocation questionaire or for those who did, rejected their original seat assignment, hoping to get better seats. (Reminder that the Yankees clearly recommended NOT to reject the seat assignment.) Most were greatly disappointed. Today is March 10, and I have still NOT been contacted by the Yankees. In fact, I just placed another call today to the ticket office, my third call, and they said my plan, plan D, the Sunday plan, should be taken care of by the end of this week, or early next week. The ticket representative did say they cannot guarantee me anything, but that I would be placed on a waiting list if I was not assigned any seats and that I would get the same rights as any other license holder, short of having seats assigned to me, access to pre-sale tickets, etc. Time will tell and we will see. I am keeping my fingers crossed at this point. The fans I side with are the ones who have been season ticket holders for 20 to 30 years or more and got moved to horrible seats. I do not think this is the norm, but happened to "some" fans. I have listened to many who called into local radio stations in New York and say they had loge seats last year and were "dumped" out into the grandstand seats or the bleachers and were outraged. For those fans, I do feel sorry for and can understand their frustration. I do hope the Yankees can do something for those loyal fans and treat them right. I do think most fans have to understand though this was going to happen. With all the fanfare of a new stadium and the incredible signings, demand was going to be overwhelming and it would be impossible to accommodate everyone. I hope in the end all fans are taken care of the Yankees try to do the right thing. We have to remember that it is the $2,500 seats that subsidize the cheaper seats. Without the sale of those seats, I guarantee you my bleacher seats would be $25 a ticket and not $12. I was shocked when I heard my bleacher seats were staying at $12, which is all I can afford. I live over an hour from the stadium and with tickets, parking, etc. it is a very expensive day. At this point, I look forward to hearing from the Yankees and getting assigned a seat, any seats! I already bought tickets on my own for April 17 against the Indians. The seats are upstairs, but I do not care, I am in the building and will enjoy the game. I will keep you posted on what goes on with my tickets and hope for the best. Good luck to all season ticket holders...I hope you get the seats you want....and deserve.

PS - I did hear that when Lon Trost was on a local radio show in NY, he actually took down the names and numbers of fans that called in to complain and said he would personally try to "fix" the problems they were having with the relocation process. It sounded like a very nice gesture and I hope he followed through on it.

PSS - I also did hear that the Yankees goal is to keep 6,000-7,000 seats available for the general public to buy. This is something I DISAGREE with completely. Until all season ticket holders are taken care of, no tickets should be made available to the general public. They can buy them through 3rd party tickets agencies like the rest of us and take their chances. The tickets license holders deserve first shot and there should be no exceptions.


Yankees Trivia for 3/10

Who was the last Yankees pitcher to hit a home run?

Lindy McDaniel hit a home run back on September 28, 1972 against Detroit's Mickey Lolich.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Yankees Trivia for 3/9

What pitcher holds the record for the Yankees for most strikeouts in a single game?

Bonus Question - Who was the first player born in Japan to play for the Yankees? (Hint - He debuted with the team on July 10, 1997)

*Ron Guidry had 18 S.O. on June 17, 1978.
*Bonus - Hideki Irabu

Friday, March 6, 2009

Decision on A-Rod - Surgery or Not?

I have to ask about the timing of A-Rod's injury. If coaches like Kevin Long are saying now they noticed something was wrong with A-Rod last year during the season, why was he not evaluated back then? With someone who takes such good care of his body, or at least as we were led to believe he did, how did A-Rod not get an evaluation last season or during the off-season. Chase Utley played through a hip injury and had surgery in the off-season and now is almost ready to go. With an injury like this, the Yankees would be smart to have A-Rod have the surgery and get him back in 3-4 months and be ready to go for the summer. I do not mind if they wait a week or two, but they cannot wait 2 or 3 months and then decide that he needs surgery, basically losing him for the season. It just makes no sense. Hip injuries are serious. Just ask Bo Jackson and Albert Belle. Two athletes whose careers were shortened by bad hips. Time will tell, but I would have him get the surgery and get his rehabbed started ASAP. Keep the 3rd base job within the organization. Make no trades at this point. We already have several players, i.e. Nady, etc. who could be tried at 3rd base until he comes back. It will be difficult to replace 4o to 50 home runs and 120 plus RBI, but the Yankees should be able to hold off until his return.

Alex, have the surgery now and get back soon!

Yankees Trivia for 3/4

Who was the first Yankee right-hander to pitch a no-hitter?

answer below

(Sam Jones on September 4, 1923 against Philadelphia)

Yankees Trivia for 3/5

What Yankees manager has compiled more managerial wins than any other Yankees manager?

answer below

(Joe McCarthy with 1,460 wins)

Yankees Trivia 3/6

What was the final score of the game when Don Larsen pitched his perfect game in game 5 of the 1956 World Series versus the Dodgers?

answer below


Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Keeper of the Pinstripes - Movie Announced

I saw on TV that Robbie Benson is directing a movie staring Josh Lucas as Thurman Munson. The movie is called "Keeper of the Pinstripes". It is about Thurman Munson and Lou Gehrig and the famous room they both stayed in to "get away from things". The room was sealed off after Munson's death and recently opened. If anyone has any further details on the movie, please post it here and let us know. It is scheduled at this time to come out in 2010. I would love to know if they did or will film any of the movie at the old stadium. I also heard that Ray Negron, the author, was filming a movie at the old stadium but I cannot confirm this.


Monday, March 2, 2009

Harvey Frommer Book Excerpt - 1927 Yankees

Harvey is a great writer and great person. From time to time I will add some excerpts from his books for everyone to enjoy. Here is a great one....



February 1927:(Excerpt from Five O'Clock Lighting: Babe Ruth, Lou Gehrig, and the 1927 New York Yankees, The Greatest Baseball Team Ever)--------------------------------------------------------------------------------The pieces were falling into place for the 1927 Yankees. But the biggest piece, Babe Ruth, had not yet signed a new contract and seemed not likely to do so anytime soon.
Hands down, he had rejected the $52,000 salary he earned in 1926. That was out of the question. In early February, Jake Ruppert sent another in what would be a series of contract offers to Ruth. This one was for $55,000.
The offer annoyed the hell out of the competitive Babe who said he had it on good authority that Ty Cobb, now with the Philadelphia Athletics, was slated to get $75,000.
The peripatetic Yankee outfielder moved on to "Hooray for Hollywood" time. He was now a star on the East Coast and the West Coast, now making his first movie, "The Babe Comes Home" for First National pictures.
In a break during the shoot, he said: "Reading, like picture shows, is almost taboo, I've got to watch the old optics closer than anything else."
Under strict orders from his trainer Artie McGovern, the Bambino, also got his beauty sleep. He was early to bed by 9 P.M. (it wasn't clear whether he was there alone or had company), and early to rise he was on there on the movie set no later than six A.M.
On Hollywood Boulevard, running three to five miles a day, George Herman winked and smiled at folks all along the way, truly a sight for all kinds of eyes. After the up and downing on the streets, Ruth was rewarded back at his Hollywood Plaza Hotel with a comforting and stimulating rub down by McGovern who had taken leave of his New York City gymnasium on 42nd Street and Madison Avenue to press the flesh of his most illustrious client still unsigned to a Yankee contract for the 1927 season.
McGovern, in a comment praising himself and the wondrous work he was accomplishing remarked about his beginnings with Ruth: "He was as near to being a total loss as anyone I ever had under my care."
On February 22, six days before the first Yankees were scheduled to arrive in St. Petersburg for spring training, Babe Ruth mailed to Colonel Ruppert from Hollywood an outline of what he thought he should be paid for 1927, just another salvo in their continuing out in the public eye contract wrangling.
The Babe was adamant as he spoke to reporters. He pressed the point that he would retire from baseball and organize a string of gymnasiums with Artie McGovern if his salary needs were not met. On February 25, the day before the big man left California for New York, his salary demands were published in the New York Daily News. Two days later a letter he wrote to Colonel Ruppert appeared in The New York Times.
The letter's tone was conciliatory. It was also forceful: "You will find enclosed contract for 1927 which I am returning unsigned because of the $52,000 salary figure. I am leaving Los Angeles February 26 to see you in New York and will be prepared to report at St. Petersburg, but only on the basis of $100,000 a year for two years, plus $7,700 held out of my salary in the past.. . ."
In fine physical condition today I hope to play as good as last year or better. I have exercised all winter and for the past twelve weeks have been working out of doors.
At my own expense I have brought Arthur McGovern from New York to condition me: "The New York club has profited from five of the best years of my baseball life. During that period my earning power to the club has greatly increased while my salary has remained unchanged. . .."
During the winter season I booked my own exhibition games and without support from other players I have received more in three weeks than the New York club pays me in three months...."
I have refused to discuss my new contract or salary during the Winter but now that I have returned my contract unsigned an explanation will be expected, and I wish you would show this letter to any newspaper writer who wishes to see it"
With best personal wishes, Yours truly, BABE RUTH"
After the long trip from California, Babe Ruth arrived on the second day of March at Grand Central Station in Manhattan at 9:40 A.M. on the first section of the Twentieth Century Limited.
Half a dozen gate tenders, a squad of private police and railroad security were powerless to hold back more than a hundred of the more ardent and adoring fans who had broken through and gained access to the train platform. They roared at their idol, easy to spot in his brown cap and tan overcoat, as he got off the train.
Outside the entrance to the train, more than two thousand more fans waited, excited, cheering as their hero came through, a wide smile on his big face.
============================================================Harvey Frommer is his 34th consecutive year of writing sports books. The author of 40 of them including the classics: "New York City Baseball,1947-1957" and "Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball," his REMEMBERING YANKEE STADIUM, an oral/narrative history (Abrams, Stewart, Tabori and Chang) was published in 2008 as well as a reprint version of his "Shoeless Joe and Ragtime Baseball."
Frommer sports books are available direct from the author - discounted and autographed.
FROMMER SPORTSNET (syndicated) reaches a readership in excess of one million and appears on Internet search engines for extended periods of time.

Mickey Mantle's Live Internet Radio with Ruth's Grandaughter

If you do not know, Linda Ruth Tosetti, is the granddaughter of the one and only, Babe Ruth. She is a class act and a wonderful person to meet. Read below and listen to the radio clip of where she celebrated Ruth's birthday at Mickey Mantle's Restaurant in New York City on February 6, 2009. It is a great piece....

From, Brad

Click here: and go to:
Original Air Date: 2/6/2009 4:00 PM
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The Babe Ruth Birthday Bash
Lida Ruth Tosetti, the granddaughter of the legendary Babe Ruth, is celebrating the Bambino's birthday in a big way, as she and a slew of guests will be on "Live From Mickey Mantle's" Friday, Feb. 6 is Babe's 60th birthday since he died in 1948. Just before he died, his great friend and great songwriter, Peter De Rose, (who also wrote 'Deep Purple') played a song for him - titled "BABE" - at this last (very big) birthday party, at The Cardinal, a restaurant/nightclub right near where Mickey Mantle's is now. This song was never recorded. It's only been heard by once by those lucky enough to attend Babe's party - which included a Who's Who of A-List celebrities. The new song will make its World Premiere on the show.